The Lampblack Blue of Memory: My Mother Echoes


by Sarah Abigail Adleman

Winner of an IPPY Silver Medal for the “Essay” Category
Winner of the 2019 Nautilus Book Silver Award for Lyric Prose or Hybrid Works
Winner of the 2020 da Vinci Eye Award for Superior Cover Artwork

Literary Nonfiction. Memoir. Poetry. Hybrid Genre.

“To call Sarah Adleman’s memoir profound and beautiful would be a grossly inadequate attempt to describe a brilliant, deeply moving yet unflinchingly unsentimental exploration of grief I could never in my life have begun to imagine, at least not until now: a blended-genre collage of historical, scientific, autobiographical and deeply spiritual nonfiction, poetry and prose poetry, including the poetry written by Adleman’s wise, remarkable mother. This memoir asks some of the most difficult questions anyone can ask: How is acceptance and forgiveness even possible in the face of unspeakable cruelty and violence? How is it possible even to describe, much less to find the right metaphors for, unspeakable pain and grief? Yet through her most profound struggles, Adleman finds a way, taking us on long journeys by train, across snowy landscapes, even to sweat lodges and Tibet, making a deep dive into such a complex array of extended metaphors that she can finally bring herself, and us, to a kind of understanding and acceptance. Before now, I could not have imagined a more courageous, life-changing memoir than this, yet here it is, a loving tribute to Adleman’s long-grieving father and lost mother.”–Lex Williford

Signed by the author.

Hardcover | 169 pages | Tolsun Books | 2019

Sarah Abigail Adleman was raised along the bayous of Houston with her two brothers. After working as a watch repair specialist, a project coordinator for a photographer, and a bartender in a downtown dive, she joined the Peace Corps and was stationed in Bangladesh. She later taught English in China before moving to El Paso for love. She continued to travel and study yoga and meditation in India and South East Asia while working as a Certified Yoga Therapist. She earned a MFA in Creative Writing from The University of Texas at El Paso and has had work recognized by Kindred Magazine, Terrene, and Glimmer Train. This is her first book. She lives in Colorado with her husband, newborn son, and dog, Bartleby.

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